Bringing Wrapping Paper Home for the Holidays

By John Dammermann
December 3, 2015
Employees are stand in front of large rolls of wrapping paper on rewinder machines inside a warehouse

Editor’s Note: Since this post was published, Impact Innovations has doubled its production of Christmas wrapping paper to 20 million rolls in December 2016. The company has also grown its staff to 25 full-time employees and more than 200 seasonal jobs as a result of working with Walmart.

Just as quickly as the turkey legs were devoured and the pumpkin pie tins cleaned out, Americans shifted their attention to Christmas. At Impact Innovations, however, we’ve been ramping up for the holidays since May.

Six months ago, we began installing our very own giftwrap printing press at our facility in Memphis. Within 30 days, it was up and running, which signaled another small victory in the push to jumpstart U.S. manufacturing.

Over the past couple of decades, we’ve become the largest supplier of Christmas giftwrap to Walmart in the U.S. Until this year, our master rolls of wrapping paper were printed at our factory in Asia and shipped to our Memphis facility, where they were converted into smaller consumer rolls.

But with our recent investment – made in direct response to Walmart’s push to source $250 billion in products that support U.S. jobs over the next decade – 35% of the Christmas giftwrap we produce for Walmart this holiday season will be manufactured on U.S. soil. That’s 10 million rolls.

With the installation of a second press in Memphis, we’re committed to pushing that figure to 50% for 2016, and incremental growth in that number year after year. This year alone, our push to onshore the manufacturing of Christmas giftwrap for Walmart has created 20 new full-time jobs and more than 100 seasonal (March-November) jobs. We expect those numbers to increase in the coming years as well.

Because of increasing labor and shipping costs associated with overseas production, we’ll realize savings over time. But with a big investment like this – basically transforming our Memphis facility – we needed an extended commitment to make it happen, and Walmart came through. This isn't just about the money. It's about doing the right thing. By growing U.S. manufacturing, we’re creating local jobs, and local industry support jobs. Those jobs help elevate families, businesses, our communities, and our entire country.

Impact Innovations does a significant seasonal business with Walmart, ranging from wrap, bags, bows, and ribbons to stockings, tree skirts, wreaths and window clings. We hope to find ways to onshore more of that in the years ahead, but the opportunity was right for Christmas giftwrap now. It’s a big first step and one we’re extremely proud to be a part of.